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Penn Jersey Roller Derby

1 derby

(The following is a special series on Bluejeanfoodcritic.com written by guest contributing writer William Knowles. He highlights his passions of of trying something new whenever the opportunity presents itself, or possibly something old, but new again since it has been a while. I hope you enjoy his very special perspective that I am sure many of you can relate to. Follow him on his exciting journey “Around Town”)

The Penn Jersey Roller Derby is a spirited organization based in North Philadelphia that features co-ed skaters competing in a league with both flat and banked roller tracks.  On Sunday, November 8th, an open house and skate was held at the home warehouse of the league, and I got to check out the action…

Located just a stones throw away from the Temple University campus, the warehouse will soon hold two large tracks to host all of the league skates.  On this day, a scrimmage between the She-Devils and the Hooligans was taking place, in celebration of the 10th anniversary of the organization.  The “Donut Rollers” event served coffee and donuts to all guests who came out for the event, followed by an open skate.

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Many times when you live in a sports crazed town such as Philadelphia, you can take for granted all of the different kinds of club sport that actually exist besides the big four.  One of the most impressive things I took from my visit was the sheer athleticism that the skaters of both genders showed, along with some incredible grit and toughness.  The participants are willing to completely sacrifice their bodies to not only compete, but to win.  In a world where sports has become a war over contracts and stature, these athletes are simply having the time of their lives, and the results are very entertaining.

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The members of the PJRD show great pride in their venture.  Jamyra Perry, better known in the local skating universe as Kandi Krush, explained the game and operation to me glowingly.  Dudley Do-Wrong, the club president, was thrilled with the turnout for something that he helped to launch a decade ago (and obviously proud to see it grow as it has).  The derby events are held roughly every month, and the full schedule of upcoming games can be found at pennjerseyrollerderby.com.  If you are a sports fan, think outside the box and attend a game soon to see a fast paced alternative to a day at the ballpark or a football Sunday.

See you there, and around town…

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